# Tag Info

18

Helium (He) is formed by radioactive decay of uranium (U) and thorium (Th) to lead (Pb). There's another name for the nucleus of a 4He atom: It's an alpha particle. Alpha decay is one of the pathways by which radioactive elements eventually decay into non-radioactive elements. For example, 238U decays to 234Th via alpha decay. There are three key isotopes ...

17

The cloud that you see is a mixture of solids and liquids. The liquid is water and the solids are ice, cloud condensation nuclei and ice condensation nuclei (tiny particulates that water and ice condense on). The invisible part of clouds that you cannot see is water vapor and dry air. The majority of the cloud is just plain air in which the invisible ...

16

Caesium-137 is not used in the fracking process. Caesium-137 is used as a source of gamma-rays in some logging tools, most notably the density tool (one example), and some other instruments such as flowmeters. This is what the story you linked to is about. Logging tools are used after drilling to measure the properties of the rocks in the borehole, and ...

16

The most important source of natural gas is natural gas. This is why it is called natural. It is not "made" from oil or coal. Natural gas forms by decomposition of organic material. Whether the organic material decomposes to coal, oil, or gas depends on the composition of the original material, time, pressure, and temperature. In theory, oil (=long chains ...

15

The sequence of events you describe has never happened, for several reasons. As Sabre Tooth mentions in the comments, vehicle emissions have a negligible effect on stratospheric ozone. (Note that while vehicle emissions can lead to ozone production at ground level, the ozone layer is several kilometres above the Earth's surface and isn't really affected by ...

13

A cavern filled with natural gas would look like an ordinary cavern. However, natural gas is rarely abundant in caverns. Most natural gas reservoirs occur in the pore spaces of sandstones. These pore spaces are generally up to about 1 mm in diameter. Here's a photomicrograph of a sandstone — the green-blue colour is the pore space; Q, F, L, and M are quartz,...

12

Helium is produced by the radioactive decay of primordial uranium and thorium. It should not be strongly associated with non-primordial 'fossil' hydrocarbons. The first statement is correct. The second is not. There are several reasons that helium should be strongly associated with non-primordial hydrocarbons. Both are fluids found predominately in the ...

10

You need a radiative transfer model and global climate model to do it with greenhouse gases. you can derive the temperature without greenhouse gases as discussed below: The absorption is highly variable depending on wavelength and can be seen in this graphic: Radiative transfer through the atmosphere is specific to pressure, temperature, and wavelength. ...

8

I had a similar question, and then I learned that at the molecular level it is diffusion what dominates, that means that despite Hydrogen is lighter, it won't rise to the top of the atmosphere. Flotation as we visualize it doesn't really work at the molecular level (because it is overcome by chemical diffusion). Therefore, the Hydrogen in the atmosphere is ...

7

Atmospheric escape is the loss of planetary atmospheric gases to outer space. You'd never be able to contain ALL of any gas forever by gravity. Ultimately you end up in the rarefied atmosphere where there is some probability that a molecule of gas will reach escape velocity. The probability distribution is given by the Maxwell-Boltzmann distribution and the ...

7

A cloud isn't solid any more than a bunch of dust picked up by the wind is solid. It's mostly air, but what you see is tiny suspended particles, so it's no more a liquid than a bunch of dust blowing in the wind is solid. The entire cloud needs another definition because it's so diffuse. Suspended very tiny drops of water or ice crystals is probably the ...

7

The category "other gases" may not solely include other naturally occurring gases extracted from the Earth. As you state natural gas is predominantly methane, extracted from the Earth. Another type of gas commonly used is petroleum gas, which is prepared by refining petroleum of wet natural gas. Petroleum gas is propane or butane. Coal gas, which was ...

7

David Hammen's answer explains why He is extracted from natural gas. But, it is not found only there. Helium exists just about everywhere on earth. You find it in volcanoes, in subseafloor hydrothermal vents and even just slowly leaking away from the ground in U and Th rich zones. As with all extraction of natural resources, it comes down to economics. How ...

7

So, naively, one would expect the heavier gasses to pool in the lower atmosphere and the light ones at the top. That's overly naive. That same naive expectation would lead one to think that uranium should be concentrated in the Earth's core, or that a mix of water and ethanol should be differentiated with water on the bottom and ethanol on top. Uranium is ...

6

But despite of that, there is no reports of miners dying because on the top of the cavity the air was only nitrogen or oxygen at the bottom. Yes and no, miners die from other causes, like lack of oxygen, sulphur poisoning, etc. But for example you can already get a case of sulphur poisoning near Fumaroles in volcanic regions, simply because the air that has ...

6

Fred's answer looks correct, but in this case, the source is right there under the chart. US Energy Information Administration (type "other gases" in the search box) Explained here in the footnotes Other Gas includes blast furnace gas and other manufactured and waste gases derived from fossil fuels. 0.3% if anyone is interested. Prior to 2011 the ...

6

As a USA resident, the EPA is the best place to start when wondering about the emissions inventory of atmospheric pollutants or pollutant precursors that affect the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (e.g. Particulate Matter, Carbon Monoxide, Sulfur Dioxide, Lead, Nitrogen Oxides, Volatile Organic Compounds). The EPA compiles a comprehensive emissions ...

5

Rather than using the GWP as a ratio, they are expressing the GWP as compared to a release of $\ce{CO2}$ with equivalent radiative effects. To use their numbers use the mass they give you and a GWP ratio of 1 for that mass (as if it were carbon dioxide). From what I've seen for chemical industry sales and marketing literature it is fairly common that they ...

5

There is no simple relationship since it all depends on the frequency (IR spectral lines for most species of molecules are a mess). The most direct and precise way of calculation is through line-by-line calculation from a large spectrum database. The atmospheric column will be very different based on angle off normal, weather, and even time of day (water ...

5

If there were an earthquake that somehow cause a crack in the earth and allowed a significant amount of magma to flow into a very large oil deposit. My understanding from this is that you are making two assumptions, which are not necessarily true: That earthquakes open cracks allowing magma to flow. It may actually the other way around: when magma flows, ...

5

An oil deposit is gravel and rock mixed with oil, capped by rock - like this: My guess is that if somehow, likely from below or sideways, magma would intrude into this deposit, oil (and posibly water) would evaporate. The pressure rises, slowing the magma intrusion. If enough magma and enough heat is provided, the vapor pressure of the oil may be enough to ...

5

So if you have a mass-mixing ratio, you effectively $\frac{ \text{kg pollutant}}{\text{kg dry air}}$. PPBV is parts per billion volume, or number of molecules of pollutant per billion molecules of dry air. Since not all particles weigh the same, you must use a conversion factor. Consider molar mass, which is the ratio of moles (a unit describing the number ...

5

The idea of a carbon sink is a bit misunderstood here. The idea of a carbon sink is a reduction of carbon that comes from the atmosphere. It must “fix” carbon that is already in the air. Trees are a carbon sink, for the most part, because their mass is made of of carbon obtained from The atmosphere. Unless the plastic formation process you are thinking of is ...

5

Not sure this is appropriate for Earth Science SE (Chemistry SE would be a better fit), but the answer is "maybe". quoting from the same Wikipedia article: Three oxides of xenon are known: xenon trioxide ($\small\mathsf{XeO_3)}$ and xenon tetroxide $\small\mathsf{(XeO_4)}$, both of which are dangerously explosive and powerful oxidizing agents, and ...

5

A significant part of the natural gas used around the world today comes from oil fields. On top of the oil is a layer of natural gas, and in the crude oil is dissolved natural gas. This will be released when the pressure drops during the extraction of the crude oil so the natural gas will be separated from the oil during the extraction process. Earlier ...

4

According to 3-D Printing Artificial Reservoir Rocks to Test Their Petrophysical Properties Pore sizes of typical reservoir sandstone range from 0.1 to 100s of microns.

4

A show is a visual indication of hydrocarbons, in the jargon of petroleum exploration, it is typically used to describe a drilling. It could be e.g. a Gas show in the drilling fluid. Show evaluation is an important tool to understand a reservoir. When hydrocarbons reach the surface naturally, we call it a petrolium seep. Technically, I guess, a seep ...

3

The helium in natural gas wells is created from uranium and thorium (as you correctly state) contained in the underlying granite basement rock or radioactive black shales that allows the natural gas to be trapped and contained. It's not that the helium is created from the fossil hydrocarbons, but that it comes from the rocks that trap those hydrocarbons (...

3

Most plastics are made from the already-sunk carbon of crude oil or natural gas, and as a result, can be at best carbon neutral. However, bioplastics such as cellulose acetate or polylactic acid are derived from plant sources; the carbon here comes from the atmosphere, and they can theoretically act as carbon sinks. However, even if we switched all our ...

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